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Central Asia’s first car engine production unit in opens in Tashkent

19 November 2011

http://www.uznews.net of 11/19/2011 - General Motors (GM) Powertrain Uzbekistan, Central Asian first automotive engine producer, opened its doors to the press on 17 November to mark the launch of operations at the factory.

The company will produce energy-efficient, Euro V-compliant engines, namely the Ecotec 1.2 litre (82 bhp) and 1.5 litre (115 bhp) models.

The design capacity of the plant is 225,000 engines per year. Output will be supplied to the GM Uzbekistan car factory in Asaka in Andijan region, one of the Central Asian and CIS factories which form part of a GM global network producing more than 200,000 Chevrolet cars every year.

The General Director of GM Powertrain Uzbekistan, Jurgen Spendel, discussed the new venture at a reception hosted by GM at the US Embassy, and as journalists toured the new production facility.

“The first engines will be used in the production of the Chevolet Spark mini cars, assembled in Asaka, said Spendel. “We hope that the engines which we produce here will surpass the expectations

of our buyers.”

Asked whether the production of the new engines would help to make cars cheaper for local buyers, Spendel responded, “The price of our cars is determined by the market.” He added, “I make motors, I do not sell cars.”

The factory’s exports, Spendel said, would be mainly to China, Korea, India and Japan, where the GM engine models currently in use are now outmoded.

“The type of ‘next-generation’ motors we produce will meet all internationally adopted standards on fuel efficiency and low emissions. The countries to which we export will be adopting these standards in the near future.”

The total cost of the 40 ha plant was US$522 million. Of this total, US$298 million was from the joint venture’s own funds; Uzbekistan’s reconstruction and development fund provided a US$14.9 million loan, local commercial banks extended credit of US$156.9 million and foreign investors provided US$52 million.

GM owns 52% of the joint venture, the other 47% of shares belong to Uzavtosanoat (Uzavtoprom).

Jurgen Spendel stressed that “the opening of the new plant will not only boost the high-technology production capabilities of Uzbekistan, but is also bringing 1200 jobs to the country. GM employs a total of 6,600 people in Uzbekistan. GM is also keen to promote partnership with Uzbekistan’s higher education institutions,and has established programmes to offer further specialist training to college leavers.